Why is My Tomato Plant Dead?

I love gardening.

I do.

But I’m not terribly good at it.

Case in point:


One of my tomato plants this year is really having some problems, and I’m hard-pressed to figure out what is going on with it.

Here’s the story:

I started it from seed, and all was well in the beginning. It grew rapidly, I transferred to larger pots (I have a balcony garden) and I thought that fresh tomatoes were in my future. Small green tomatoes were everywhere. But then something happened! And now it looks terrible. I’ve been watering it normally, the weather is as hot as it usually is (read: hot) and it gets enough light and darkness.


So what is going on?!?!!! Any ideas?

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  1. Mrs Sunshine says:

    It looks soaked. You need to keep attaching it to the stake as it grows taller. (My parents used a fence that was small enough to surround the plants and they attached as they grew taller.)

    It doesn’t look dead yet. Try out those two things and see if that can bring it back to life. :)

    (Also, I can’t tell how big the pot is but it may be too small for the plant to grow very big.)

    Good luck!

    • jody says:

      Hi, I have had many lost tomato plants also.. -I had white flies at one time . Look under the leaves for tiny specks , shake the leaves to see if you have them. If you do you need to get some special spray @ home depot etc .to kill them.Wash ,rinse all leaves off good , eggs laid under side . Hope this helps .If you don’t have flies , guess it needs repotting in clean fresh soil with fertilizer to help ;) )) good. Luck !!

    • I totally see the soaked thing…I’ve often thought that maybe that could be it…

  2. Erin says:

    I heard/read that this might not be a great year for tomatoes. I’m just going to do 2-3 plants.

    I’ve also heard they are tough to grow from seed.


  3. Julia says:

    Tomato plants need direct sun light. You may be watering too much. The dirt looks packed. If air gets to the roots, it will kill it, so don’t punch holes in the dirt to water.

    You can try snipping one stalk and stick it into the dirt.
    It will make roots and keep growing.

  4. Megan says:

    Umm, it’s March and you’re growing a tomato plant. Who cares what’s wrong with it?? I’m trying to decide if I put peas outside soon if they’ll die :( :( :( Stupid Chicago.

  5. Good point, Chicago;) LOL

  6. Lisa J. says:

    This is why we grow our tomatoes in a Topsy-Turvy — they never get droopy! Ha! But is it really even possible to over-water a tomato plant? I’ve always heard you can’t water them enough, since tomatoes themselves are comprised of over 90 percent water, they need lots of it to grow. We water ours a couple of times a day.

  7. Dar says:

    What are the leaves doing? From the photo they kinda look like my plants did last summer where the leaves would turn a yellow slightly then suddenly 1-2 days later the leaves were black and falling off. If they are and you touch them and see a ‘dust’ almost. It is some kind of fungus or blight. My tomatoes pulled through it but did not produce nearly as much and many of the tomatoes would fall off before they were ready. If this is the case, you will need to get rid of the plant (painful I know) and the soil and possibly even the pot (at least clean it very well). The blight can remain in the soil and pot and infect every other tomato planted there after. Also, since it does look wet this may really be the case. The blight I had last year was notorious for being vicious when the weather was wetter than normal. Oh yeah, one last thing you may check where you got your seeds. I have heard many diseases can be ‘stored’ in the seeds from plants that had been infected. Sorry this does not sound very happy or positive. It could be something completely different, but without knowing more than the picture that is my guess. Good Luck!!!

  8. Elizabeth W says:

    I would try to tranfer the plant to a new pot with soil. Also, yes! Just get a Tomato plant already started, in the meantime. That is how we do ours every year. We have so many we give them away!

  9. Kay M. says:

    I have never had good luck with tomatoes in a pot, but if I put them in the ground, we have more tomatoes than Iknow what to do with. If you have a place you can put it in the ground, try that. And when you plant it, dig a hole deep enough to plant about 2/3 of that plant. Then let it go. It will grow, and you will have tomatoes. I have six plants right now, (two beefsteak, three cherry, and one grape) and they are growing like weeds.

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